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Neuropathology in Germany during World War II: Julius Hallervorden (1882-1965) and the Nazi programme of 'euthanasia'

Item Type:Article
Title:Neuropathology in Germany during World War II: Julius Hallervorden (1882-1965) and the Nazi programme of 'euthanasia'
Creators Name:Hughes, J.T.
Abstract:In Germany, during World War II, more than 120,000 handicapped children and adults were murdered for the convenience of the State. To gain scientific knowledge, the brains of many of these patients were examined by German neuropathologists. Some 698 of these specimens were examined in the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Institut für Hirnforschung in Berlin-Buch by Julius Hallervorden, whose career is reviewed together with that of his superior, Hugo Spatz. Hallervorden also oversaw the examination of cases of mental handicap by W-J Eiche at a laboratory at the Hospital Brandenburg-Gorden. Also in Berlin was Berthold Ostertag, neuropathologist at the Rudolf-Virchow-Hospital, who examined cases from the Children's Ward at Wiesengrund. Smaller but significant numbers of brains were examined in Munich, Heidelberg, Hamburg and Schleswig. Some brains of similar origin were examined in Vienna and in Lubliniecz. Jürgen Peiffer has estimated that German neuropathologists examined 2097 brains arising from the Nazi Programme of 'Euthanasia'.
Keywords:19th Century History, 20th Century History, Euthanasia, Germany, National Socialism, Neurosciences, War Crimes, World War II
Source:Journal of Medical Biography
Publisher:Sage Publications
Page Range:116-122
Date:May 2007
Official Publication:https://doi.org/10.1258/j.jmb.2007.06-57
PubMed:View item in PubMed

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